Advocacy at Temple Jeremiah is focused on social justice issues and has two primary facets: 1) to educate our congregants and people from other faith-based organizations about social justice issues, and 2) teach people how to communicate their opinions on local, state, and federal programs and legislation to their elected officials.
To date, Temple Jeremiah advocacy efforts have focused on immigration, food insecurity, anti-hunger issues, the criminal justice system, and issues related to individuals with special needs. Other social justice issues are continually monitored for potential involvement by the congregation.
Everyone is created in Tselem Elohim-the Image of God. The basic ideas of the Jewish tradition require all communities and societies to protect the welfare of their members and citizens and to develop the conditions necessary for the maintenance of safety and health. When the rabbis in the Talmud come across a case in society that is not specifically covered by a Mitzvah in Torah, but nevertheless has to be addressed, they base their rulings on a simple verse in the Torah: “And you shall do that which is Yashar and Tov – righteous and good” (Deuteronomy 6:18). So should we.
We believe that common-sense solutions can help decrease the escalating epidemic of gun violence.
We want to educate and mobilize supporters to take action that will result in stronger laws and policies to save lives.
Mental Health Initiative Platform
Individuals with mental illness should have equal opportunity to fully participating in society. To achieve this, Temple Jeremiah:
- Believes everyone should have equal access to quality mental health providers regardless of their socioeconomic background.
- Supports education to all age groups about mental health to promote understanding and reduce the stigma associated with mental illness.
In 2018, the Temple Jeremiah Social Justice Committee took on the issue of mental health awareness and advocacy. Access to mental health care for all and paying attention to overall mental well-being is an important issue that benefits everyone in society. Temple Jeremiah is partnering with Jewish Child and Family Services (JCFS; www.jcfs.org) to provide support to congregants in the areas of mental health and social services. Contact Temple Liaison Dawn Levin at 847.745.5450 for more information. We are also proud to partner with the following advocacy organizations: NAMI (the country’s largest mental health organization dedicated to advocacy and support) www.nami.org; NoShameOnYou (a local organization dedicated to eliminating the stigma of mental health conditions) www.noshameonyou.org; Community Behavioral Healthcare Association of Illinois (a statewide organization that works to ensure access to quality behavioral healthcare services for Illinois) www.cbha.net; Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism (a Jewish social justice group, RAC works on the federal and statewide level to advocate for many social justice issues) www.rac.org.
- Justice should be color blind
- Punishment should be just
- The ability to get fair, just treatment should not depend on income
To visit our Criminal Justice page, click here.
- Our nation is stronger when we welcome those of different race, ethnicity, and faith traditions.
- Our nation will be stronger with clear paths toward citizenship for immigrants.
- All people within our nation should be treated with dignity and respect.
To visit our Immigration page, click here.
The Temple Jeremiah Advocacy Platform holds that we:
- Believe no one should go hungry
- Support access to healthy, fresh, nutritional food for everyone
- Support and protect food assistance programs
- Need to eliminate barriers to food access for everyone
To visit our Hunger page, click here.
Individuals with special needs should have equal opportunity to participate in all aspects of society. To that end we strive to:
- Support access to individual housing options within a community
- Support and protect social services that maintain health and family unity
- Eliminate barriers to housing and social services
To visit our Inclusion page, click here.